Pilot granddad gave her a flying start

Ms Inez Bangar grew up listening to stories from her grandfather, who was a pilot, and her uncle, who is an aircraft engineer. She wants to be an aircraft engineer or aviation researcher.
Ms Inez Bangar grew up listening to stories from her grandfather, who was a pilot, and her uncle, who is an aircraft engineer. She wants to be an aircraft engineer or aviation researcher.ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR

The Straits Times meets three graduates from local polytechnics - Temasek, Nanyang and Ngee Ann - whose passions have been shaped by their circumstances and the influences of their loved ones.

At the age of 14, Ms Inez Bangar decided she wanted a career in aerospace engineering.

She grew up listening to stories from her grandfather - who was a pilot with the Indian Air Force for 23 years and the Republic of Singapore Air Force for 12 years - and her uncle, who is an aircraft engineer.

"I remember my grandfather told me about how he was flying in bad weather once, and visibility was low," recalls the 19-year-old Temasek Polytechnic (TP) student.

"Technology was not so advanced at the time. Suddenly, a mountain appeared in front of him, and he had to veer away to avoid crashing head first into it."

Ms Bangar, who is Singaporean and wants to be an aircraft engineer or aviation researcher, will graduate from TP's Aerospace Engineering course and receive her diploma certificate next Wednesday.

She is one of the course's top students, with a perfect grade point average of 4.0.

 

"On my 16th birthday, my grandfather gave me an antique barometer when I told him I wanted to pursue a career in this industry," said Ms Bangar, whose mother worked as an air stewardess.

 
 

Her grandfather lives in India, but Ms Bangar took him to visit the polytechnic when he came to Singapore once.

"He was so excited when I showed him around the aviation academy," she said. "He likes to take credit for what I do but in all seriousness, he is definitely part of why I am here."

Jolene Ang

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 04, 2019, with the headline 'Pilot granddad gave her a flying start'. Print Edition | Subscribe